Press release from The Center for Cultural Preservation:
The Center for Cultural Preservation, WNC’s cultural history and documentary film center, is proud to present a special concert featuring one of the premiere bluegrass bands in Western North Carolina, the Whitewater Bluegrass Company. The band’s style of music intermingled with stories and humor have graced Western North Carolina stages for more than 35 years. They have been featured performers at the Mountain Folk and Dance Festival, the longest continuous running folk festival in the US, Bele Chere, the largest outdoor festival in the southeast; and for six consecutive years have been selected as the host band for Folkmoot USA, North Carolina’s official, international folk festival.
According to Uncle Ted White, the band’s founder and leader, “The music, dance and stories that we do have always been passed down from one generation to the next orally. Now more than ever thanks to good stewards of the culture, like David Weintraub, we are able to record and pass it down in documentary form. We are particularly excited about the start of production of Weintraub’s latest film on the river heroes of WNC given that our band was founded on the banks of the Nantahala River over three decades ago. We became to the whitewater rafters what The Beach Boys were to the surfers. Documenting the rivers and what they mean to our culture is vitally important. We are so honored to be a part of it.”
The Center for Cultural Preservation’s founder and filmmaker David Weintraub adds “What makes our region special are its rivers and streams. So many heroes throughout our history stood up to fight to keep them clean and pristine including the Cherokee, the mountaineers, and river heroes like Wilma Dykeman. And we can’t forget the heroes today who work to monitor, restore and educate the public to our waterway treasures. Years ago, farmers and conservationists joined together to say United We Stand, Divided We’re Dammed when TVA tried to install 14 dams up and down the French Broad. This new film will make it clear that the urgency to protect our liquid natural inheritance is as pressing today and it always was.”
The concert will begin with a screening of a short preview of the new river film followed by the Hellbender Band performing songs of the Mills River followed by the Whitewater Bluegrass Company. The concert is scheduled for Friday, May 18th at 7:00 PM at Blue Ridge Community College’s Thomas Auditorium. Tickets are $15 and advanced reservations are strongly recommended by registering online at www.saveculture.org or calling the Center at (828) 692-8062.
The Center for Cultural Preservation is a cultural nonprofit organization dedicated to working for mountain heritage continuity through oral history, documentary film, education and public programs. For more information about the Center contact them at (828) 692-8062 or www.saveculture.org